Not only are Liverpool playing well but they finally getting great rewards for playing well.
The signings of Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho have given Liverpool more options to win games. The organisation was always there, and the new style attractive enough, but Sturridge is a scorer and Coutinho creates goals; that was Liverpool’s problem earlier in the season.
They were reliant entirely on Luis Suarez getting goals, and if he has an off day – as he did in the first leg against Zenit, for example – Liverpool lose.
You saw this in the matches against the top teams, where you need multiple options to score.
Spurs are also a touch reliant on one player - Gareth Bale - and the reason they beat Arsenal at the weekend is because the Gunners can’t defend.
Liverpool are much better organised, and they will attack Spurs in waves. Liverpool also currently have better attacking options than Arsenal, and they will create more clear-cut chances.
Liverpool are playing for next season at the moment – people cling on to hope of making the top four but that’s not going to happen.
It’s all about next season and you can see they are finally heading in the right direction. The difference between this transitional phase and those of the last few years is that Liverpool are playing very well, and getting the goals when they’re on top.
They are playing the right way, getting the breaks and taking it to the next level. Wigan would have been a match they lost last season or earlier this season, but now they’re not letting this happen. Liverpool are getting early goals and killing matches off.
The first 20 minutes on Sunday will be key. It will be an old-school Anfield league game where Liverpool go for them from the start.
Liverpool will have to cope with Bale – while Arsenal leave spaces and do not make specific plans for specific attackers, Liverpool will have a strategy, and will have worked on it all week. I think Liverpool’s organisation will take care of Bale, or at least make it more difficult for him.
While Liverpool and Spurs is the marquee match in the league this weekend, Manchester United and Chelsea’s FA Cup clash is probably the bigger game.
I think United are at a level where they rebound from disappointment quickly; they will move on fast and what better way than to beat one of their rivals in the Cup?
They’re not going to throw away an opportunity to set things right at home, and I expect a very strong performance from Manchester United, that they will put out Chelsea and play well in doing so.
I think United did collapse tactically and mentally for 15 minutes against Real, but I think that was specific to the occasion. It’s very unlike them to lose their heads but, in my view, it was just because they realised the magnitude of the task when down to 10 men against Real Madrid. It’s hard enough with your full team.
And with the situation at Chelsea, with fans seemingly obsessed with undermining Rafael Benitez, I can’t see them offering enough to resist a wounded beast.